Some farmers are just waiting for the weather to cooperate
By Diego Flammini
March 19 signals the first day of spring, meaning it won’t be too long before farmers are busy planting their 2020 crops.
With that at top of mind, Farms.com reached out to some American producers to learn where they are in their spring preparation processes.
Bob Worth, a cash cropper from Lake Benton, Minn., is putting his plan in motion.
“We’re starting to think about maintenance and making sure we have all of our seed, fertilizer and fuel bought,” he told Farms.com.
Because of 2019’s difficult planting conditions, some of Worth’s work is already done.
He and his son Jon, grow about 2,300 acres of corn and soybeans. But last year the duo took prevented planting insurance on 1,800 acres and only seeded about 200 acres of corn and 300 acres of soybeans.
“Our equipment was ready to go last year and is pretty much ready to go for this year,” Bob said.
The pair plan to seed a 50/50 split of corn and soybeans and don’t anticipate making any hybrid or variety changes.
But that decision could change depending on how the weather acts, Worth said.
“If we have another wet spring, then we would move into an earlier variety,” he said.
The Worths have a target date of April 15 for when they’d like to start planting.
“April 11 is the date for federal crop insurance to get full coverage on corn,” he said. “It’s been about three years since we’ve been able to do that but we’re hopeful for this year.”
For Robert Alpers, who cultivates about 4,000 acres of grain and has 550-head of cattle in Prairie Home, Mo., the livestock portion of the farm is taking up the bulk of the attention at this point.
“At this time of year, it’s all about our cows,” he told Farms.com.
Once the nice weather arrives, Alpers may not have many delays.
“We have already purchased all of our inputs. The fall fertilizer has been applied and we’ve taken delivery on about one third of our seed,” he said. “It’s been raining a lot, so I can assure you there won’t be any March corn planted in my part of Missouri this year.”